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RE: Ceratopsian mass estimates



> From: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu [mailto:owner-dinosaur@usc.edu]On Behalf Of
> Cliff Green
>
> Dear Andrew and List,
>
>     I think that your weight estimates for ceratopsians is more on the nose
> than other's previous interpretations. This is based on my own extensive
> study of these dinosaurs through sculpture. I know that saying " Occhams
> Razor " on this list makes a considerable amount of members start howling at
> the moon and frothing uncontrollably, but here it is anyways.
>     Modern large to giant land mammals, that have generally the same mass as
> big ceratopsians, weigh in at about what Andy's estimates dictate.A White
> Rhinoceros maxes out at about four tons. It is roughly the size of a large
> ceratopsian such as Pachyrhinosaurus. A really large African Bull Elephant
> can exceed ten tons in weight. Humongeous ceratopsians such as Torosaurus,
> Pentaceratops and Triceratops are all in and around the same mass as each
> other, and yon pachyderm.

Cliff,

Where does your 10 t Loxodonta mass estimate come from? Nowak (Walker's Mammals 
of the World, 6th Edition) lists 7.5 t as the upper
part of the recorded range for historic Loxodonta. Certainly extinct 
proboscideans (Mammuthus trogonotherii, M. imperator) greatly
exceeded this, but are their directly measured specimens of African elephants 
that give this mass?


                Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
                Vertebrate Paleontologist
Department of Geology           Director, Earth, Life & Time Program
University of Maryland          College Park Scholars
        Mailing Address:
                Building 237, Room 1117
                College Park, MD  20742

http://www.geol.umd.edu/~tholtz/
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